Monday, May 23, 2011

The much anticipated meeting with the RE

Today A and I woke up and drove to meet our RE. We made this appointment back in January - hard to believe it finally arrived.

Dr. Friendly (just go with it) lives three hours away from our house. Luckily for me, my parents live halfway between here and there. So we loaded up the dogs and drove an hour and a half to their house, where we dropped off the dogs, peed, got a snack, and drove the remaining hour and 15 minutes to the clinic.

I had planned to get there really early so we could find the clinic and have lunch somewhere before our appointment. The timing worked out perfectly.

All day long I had a nervous tummy. I was so excited to meet him and also so apprehensive. What can I say, it was a big day for me and for our marriage. The most comparable feeling I’ve had is the way I felt on my high school and college graduation days. Proud, excited, uncertain about the future.

The hospital the clinic is in is really impressive. It’s beautiful and high-tech and fancy. While we were walking in, I told A “someday we’ll tell our kids about this moment.”

The staff was so friendly and helpful, and they took a digital photo for our file which I thought was funny. Dr. Friendly definitely lived up to my expectations. He was so nice and knowledgeable. He laughed with me about how organized my medical records were, which made me feel good. He looked over them carefully and took a lot of time to sit and talk with us.

They are very careful not to present themselves as an IVF factory. The intake lady asked us “What is the primary purpose of your visit?” We said “infertility”, but I think they wanted to know if we were coming expressly for IVF. Dr. Friendly also asked me “Do you have any preconceived notions about what treatment you want to seek?” I said no.

Dr. Friendly is anti-clomid and refuses to treat me with it anymore. He actually told me “you’re too thin for clomid” which I thought was funny, but flattering so I didn't argue. He presented me with these options:
1.      IUI w/injectables (namely Letrezole). He stipulated that he will only treat me for two cycles, and mandates a break cycle afterward. He gave me a 20-25% pregnancy rate for the first cycle and a 17-20% rate for the second cycle.
2.      IVF. He said that because I am young and generally healthy, he gives me a 70-75% success rate for my first IVF. Unfortunately we couldn’t start until mid July.

He sent me home with two prescriptions: one for Letrezole and one for BCP. We are supposed to decide by my next CD1 and fill whichever one is applicable.

This is the hardest decision I’ve had to make on the infertility journey. For a while I considered doing an IUI w/injectable cycle during the wait between now and July. I have kind of thrown that out. It seems like a lot to put myself through for a 25% chance of pregnancy. I think I’d rather spend the next 7 weeks exercising, drinking margaritas, and living my life than pursuing an IUI. Even though the meds are different, it still feels "been there, done that."

So I am about 80% sure that we are pursuing IVF in July.

I’m really truly excited about this. But today has been so emotionally exhausting that the excitement will just have to catch up with me.
Side note- I found out today that A’s 21 year old niece is pregnant. We have a strained relationship and she’s currently in the Navy and her husband is deployed with the Air Force. This was a hard one to take.

If you have any advice or any reason I should reconsider the IUI w/injectables cycle, I’d love to hear it.


Still A Guest Room said...

Good luck with this decision! I know you will make the one that's right for you and your husband.

TurtleMama said...

Hi Lulu - I just started following your blog. I am glad your appt went so well. It's exciting to get a plan in place. I am actually having an initial consult with an RE tomorrow as well. We were going to one in Memphis, but I wanted to get a second opinion in Colorado. So, I am sure I will also have a "nervous stomach". I have done 4 IUI's, first 3 clomid and last one was letrozole (but no injectables). I am ready to get on with the program. It will be interesting to see what the RE recommends. Good luck with your decision. I say go for IVF. Better success rates and more control over how babies you end up with.

Drevas said...

This is very exciting Lulu! Good luck with your decision... it's sounds as though you are in very good hands with Dr. Friendly!

Alex said...

Wow - how exciting! It's a tough call. If it were me, I'd go for the IVF. The higher success rates are what really sells me. So glad you like your doctor! But quick question - would you have to drive three hours for each monitoring appointment???

Lulu said...

@Alex - no, I'd do ultrasounds at my OBGYN in town and bloodwork at the local hospital. He'd manage me over the phone except for a start cycle appt, retrieval, and transfer. The IUI cycle would be done completely remotely, no trips over there.

Anonymous said...

I have to know who ur dr is!! If this cycle fails I'm all for traveling (please god don't let it fail!!!)